COOPERATION ACROSS BORDERS
About the Kvarken Council
The Kvarken Council strives to promote and develop a strong and viable region with the help of cross-border cooperation. As a neutral cooperation platform, the Council serves all its members and actors in the Kvarken region.
13 M €
Generated EU funds
to the region’s projects since 2011
As an organisation 2022
From an association to a stable legal entity
The Kvarken Council was founded in 1972 during the first Kvarken Conference in Vaasa, Finland. The first years were dedicated to the organization’s formation and the cooperation’s anchoring in the municipalities, authorities, and organizations. In 1979, the Kvarken Council became a part of the official Nordic border-regional cooperation, with financial support from the Nordic Council of Ministers and its Nordic Senior Official’s Committee for Regional Policy (NÄRP).
The Kvarken Council’s operations have been administered by a non-profit association as of 2008. At the turn of the year 2020–2021, the Kvarken Council will change from a registered association to a stable legal entity when the Kvarken council EGTC begins its operations.
One of the official cross-border operators of the Nordic Council of Ministers.
We are proud to be one of the cross-border operators funded by the Nordic Council of Ministers. The Kvarken Council’s operations are financed partly by the Nordic Council of Ministers and partly by membership fees from the main members.
Photo Esa Siltaloppi
The Kvarken Council develops the region by:
- providing a platform for cooperation for all the region’s actors
- reducing and eliminating border barriers
- increasing the region’s visibility at national and European levels
- working actively in several European networks
- utilizing the region’s strengths and supporting its development. Mainly within the following areas: business, education, tourism, research and development, health care, culture, environmental issues, sports, children and young people as well as communications and transport infrastructure
Over 100 cross-border projects in almost 50 years!
The Kvarken Council has worked actively since 1972 to propel various cross-border projects as well as initiate collaboration projects between different parties. These projects represent a wide variety. Below are examples of some. Read more about our ongoing and completed projects here.
Examples of our wide variety of projects
· FAIR – The project promotes the Kvarken region’s future electric aviation
· Midway Alignment – The project’s purpose is to secure and develop maritime traffic across the Kvarken
· E12 Atlantica Transport – The project’s purpose is to create a mutual vision and goals for the whole Kvarken region and to map out a way to reach these
· Spotlight High-Low Coast – The project’s purpose is to attract more visitors to the High Coast / Kvarken Archipelago World Heritage Site and its surrounding regions in a sustainable way
The Kvarken Council’s area of operations is called the Kvarken region
The Kvarken Council is a Nordic cross-border cooperation association for three Ostrobothnian counties in Finland and the county of Västerbotten and the municipality of Örnsköldsvik in Sweden. Together they form the Kvarken region.
The distance between Umeå and Vaasa is 80km and only 25km between the nearest islands. The entire Kvarken region extends over a distance of 550km over Sweden and Finland.
Kvarken Council association´s Organisation
The Kvarken Council association´s Board prepares the Council’s meetings and functions as an operative management body. For instance, the Board processes project plans and applications and appoints executive committees and steering committees for various projects. The Kvarken Council association´s Board consists of six members from both Finland and Sweden. Finnish MP Joakim Strand is the Chairman of the Board and Umeå’s former Municipal Commissioner Lennart Holmlund is the Deputy Chairman of the Board.
KVARKEN COUNCIL ASSOCIATION´S
Joakim Strand, City of Vaasa, Chairman of the Board
Kaj Suomela, The Regional Council of Ostrobothnia
Asko Peltola, The Regional Council of South Ostrobothnia
Stina Mattila, City of Kokkola
Erkki Välimäki, City of Seinäjoki
Jyrki Kaiponen, The Regional Council of Central Ostrobothnia
Lennart Holmlund, Region Västerbotten,
Deputy Chairman of the Board
Lilly Bäcklund, Region Västerbotten
Mathias Sehlstedt, Region Västerbotten
Åsa Ågren Wikström, Region Västerbotten
Mattias Larsson, Region Västerbotten
Per Nylén, Örnsköldsviks kommun
THE KVARKEN COUNCIL ASSOCIATION´S MEMBERS
The Kvarken Council’s Annual General Meeting is the association’s decision-making body. The association is registered with the Finnish Patent and Registration Office. The association’s Statutes are its steering document.
The Statutes in PDF form here.
The Kvarken Council’s main members have the following number of votes at the association’s Annual General Meeting, which is held in May:
The Regional Council of Ostrobothnia (Finland), 2 votes
The Regional Council of South Ostrobothnia (Finland), 2 votes
The Regional Council of Central Ostrobothnia (Finland), 2 votes
City of Vaasa (Finland), 2 votes
City of Seinäjoki (Finland), 2 votes
City of Kokkola (Finland), 2 votes
City of Jakobstad (Finland), 2 votes
Region Västerbotten (Sweden), 10 votes
Örnsköldsvik Municipality (Sweden), 2 votes
South Ostrobothnia Chamber of Commerce
Finnish-Swedish Chamber of Commerce
Föreningen Norden i Västerbotten
Företagarna i Västerbotten
City of Kaskinen
City of Kauhava
City of Kristinestad
City of Kurikka
South Ostrobothnia Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment
City of Nykarleby
Pohjola-Nordenin Pohjanmaan piiri ry
Suomen Sininen Tie ry
Svenska Österbottens förbund för utbildning och kultur
University of Vaasa
Västerbotten Chamber of Commerce
The Ostrobothnian Fisheries Association
Ostrobothnia Chamber of Commerce
FOUNDING MEMBERS OF THE KVARKEN COUNCIL EGTC
Founding members of the Kvarken Council EGTC
The Regional Council of Ostrobothnia
The Regional Council of South Ostrobothnia
The Regional Council of Central Ostrobothnia
City of Vaasa
City of Kokkola
City of Seinäjoki
City of Jakobstad
New main members (with voting rights)
City of Kurikka
City of Nykarleby
The organization page is updated when the work with EGTS has started.